Monday, March 29, 2010

Let's get LOST! (Episode 6:9 Ab Aeterno)

If you haven't seen this week's episode of LOST yet...
Don't say you weren't warned. Now that we've got that out of the way, let's talk LOST!

Remember how last week I said I wasn't really into the relationships or romantic plot lines on this show? Yeah, this week's episode made me such a liar. My heart just broke in two for the story of Richard (a.k.a. Ricardo) and his sweet Isabella. What a sad, tragic, beautiful story! What wonderful and amazing acting by Nestor Carbonell! And what a gift - to the actor and to the audience - for the writers to take time to give us this particular story. They didn't need to. They could have explained Richard's immortality in a quick two minute exchange between him and Jacob or any of the survivors. Or they could have just left ti with the explanation they had given previously: "It's because of Jacob that I'm this way. He gave me this gift." Instead, they devoted 40 minutes to his story, with almost all of it being set in the past, and I loved every single moment of it. Thank you, LOST writers. You continue to rock my world. I'm so going to miss you. (sniff sniff) Here are my chosen highlights of this amazing episode...

I thought this was the most shocking moment of the night:
A huge tsunami-type wave lifts the Black Rock up and crashes it into the Taweret statue, destroying it!

Everyone has a different level of comfort, when it comes to watching a magician on stage. There are some who are dying to know how he did it, and will not rest until the illusion is explained and all mystery expunged from the trick, then there are those who, even though they know it is a trick, are willing to play along with the deception, and are comfortable just reveling in the the mystery and the magic of it and being entertained. I think I fall more into that latter category. I am hoping that LOST answers the big questions to this massive story, and wraps up major plot lines in a satisfying way, but I'm alright with it if they don't ever fully explain all of it, like why the numbers are magical, for example. They just are, and I'm okay with that. I'm okay if they don't explain every little mysterious detail about the island. Once you explain all the mystery away, it rubs away some of that magic fae glitter, and leaves a dull spot. So, having said all that, I had no expectations that they would ever explain how the statue was destroyed, and was pleasantly surprised by this.

I was also a little surprised to find out that Hurley wasn't talking to Jacob, but instead, it was Isabella he was communicating with. Hurley seems to be a more effective Ghost Whisperer than Miles. I'm glad Hurley has embraced this gift, instead of freaking out and assuming he was having a relapse of mental illness whenever he saw dead people (although who could blame him?).

I thought this was the most heartbreaking moment of the night:
Isabella: "It wasn't your fault that I died, Ricardo. As much as you wanted to save me, it was my time. You've suffered enough."
Richard: "I would do anything for us to be together again."
Isabella: "My love, we are already together."

It sounds like a cheesy romance novel, with the words just written down like that, and taken completely out of context, but what a powerful, heart-wrenching scene this was, when Richard was able to talk to the ghost of Isabella through Hurley. Nestor Carbonell was able to show what an amazing actor he is and he made me believe every single moment of that scene - and he did it with his eyes closed - literally! I seriously hope he gets offered some major acting roles after this show concludes. I wouldn't mind seeing more of his acting chops. I also appreciate the artistry the director/cinematographer took with filming the scene so that Hurley faded out and we could savor the intensity of the moment.

And finally, here's the funny moment of the night:
Ilana: "So Richard, what do we do next?"
Richard: "Hee hee." (Giggling like a panicked little girl whose just lost her mind.)

So, there it is. I think if I had to rank my top three favorite episodes of LOST, it would be #1 The Constant (Desmond's time travel episode), #2 Through the Looking Glass (Charlie's Death) and #3 Ab Aeterno!

LOST, while not overtly a Christian show, per se, has very much toyed around with Christian themes throughout the show. This show especially brought those themes to the surface again. The Man in Black continues to remind me of satan, in the way he speaks to and interacts with people. His offer to Sayid reminded me of the same way satan spoke to Jesus, when tempting him in the desert. And the way he manipulated Richard, taking on Isabella's form to mess with him, was just cruel (and also similar to what he did with Mr. Eko). My other Lostie friends immediately thought of baptism when Jacob started dunking Richard into the ocean, so that he would realize he is alive. The agreement the Man in Black has with Jacob also is starting to remind me of the book of Job and how satan asked God for permission to tempt and test Job. My Lostie friends also came up with the idea that Jacob is an angel (maybe Michael?), sent to guard over satan and keep him trapped on the island, and that's why he can't directly influence the mortals in their choices. Maybe the island is Eden and the skeletons we're calling "Adam and Eve" really are THE Adam and Eve? Whoa.

One last freebie tidbit for you: the title of the show, "Ab Aeterno" is Latin for "from eternity". The phrase is used to mean "since the beginning" or "for long ages". What are your theories, on the overarching plot of the show? Does it seem like they are starting to build up to the ultimate finale, or are you still frustrated and unsatisfied with the plot? Leave me a comment and let me know - we have less than 24 hours to discuss until the next revelation!


Laura said...

first comment! first comment! (ok, maybe only comment, but still first!)

D.L. White said...

You're funny. :P

Laurie B said...

I, like you D L, think this story was wonderful. It was so romantic to see Richard's love for Isabella survive the ages. I do have an observation though. I can't help but notice that the man in black never promised to bring Isabella back to life, only that Richard and she could be together again. Wouldn't that happen if he was freed from his immortality and allowed to die? To Richard, living for over a centruty without his beloved was Hell. The man in black was offering to free him from that. I'm just sayin! You all know I'm still not convinced Jacob is the good guy. And also, I dodn't remember the man in black ever lying to anyone. So when he told Richard he didn't kill Isabella, I believed him. Oh wait....if Smokey was just pretending to be Isabella then I guess Smokey wasn't lying when he said he didn't kill her because she was already dea. Uh oh! My head's starting to hurt a little.

I thought it was interesting how Hurley talked to Jack when he asked who he was talking to. He said something like, this is none of your business, Jack. it was abrupt and kind of rude and not very Hurly-ish.

Did Smokey kill the Ajira survivors? I thought the man in black couldn't leave the island. So, who did it?

My last question is this...How can Richard do what Isabella told him to do and kill the man in black? Isn't he indestructable now? Maybe decapitaion. It works for Zombies. :)

I hope this next episode gives us the story of Ilana. I want to know more about her.

But guess what!!! We only have to wait 7 hours to find out What's next. Yippee!!!

Laurie B said...

Rereading my post fresh in the morning showed how tired I was last night at 1:13am when I wrote it. Sorry, for all the typos! I meant century, don't and dead.

D.L. White said...

@ Laurie - no worries! I was writing my post late at night and when I read it this morning I noticed some typos too.

In regards to the Jacob vs. Smokey, which one is good/evil. I just now wrote a long comment about this in the comments on my Recon posting.

All I can say is that the devil's promises sound great...but there's always a catch. He's a smooth talker. I think Smokey "appears" to be honest and upfront, when he's even more manipulative than Jacob seems to have been in the past. I can't explain some of Jacob's behaviors though.

Hurley has definitely become a take-charge kind of guy, and really sticks up for himself now. I didn't mind that he told Jack to be quiet, although he could have quickly explained he was talking to someone else, but of course, then that would have given away the surprise to us viewers, as we would have quickly put together who he was talking to, once we saw Isabella die in the flashback.

And I'm LOL at your decapitation/zombies comment. Love it! :P

Ron said...

I'm with Laurie - (Just because we talk about this on a daily basis doesn't mean I biased). However, Isabella did not say they had to kill not-Locke. She said that they had to prevent him from leaving the island. Also, we never saw or heard Hurley have this conversation with Isabella... Did Jacob step in after Isabella left?

My two takes on the good/bad thing.

1. Jacob has had people killed, lied and manipulated to get things to go his way. And never won. Most of the people on the list are gone or dead. Just because he believes in free will doesn't mean he's good.
2. not-Locke has always told the truth. Even if it was brutal. He also gives people free will and accepts their decisions. His only deceptions have been to find ways off the island. In this episode, he rightly tells Richard that if he stays with Jacob, he will never be with Isabella. Because, until Richard is dead, they can never fully be together.

I'll need a few more episodes and need to get more info on Widmore to see where the lines of good and evil really lie.